Graphic design is an overarching part of good web design, encompassing everything from the site background, what your navigation buttons look like, as well as colour scheme, typography and other images and graphics.
It can be tempting to overdo the graphical elements on your website, however “more” is not always “merrier” on a small monitor or device – sometimes it’s downright distracting and useless. It is important to keep in mind the purpose of your site, and its intended audience, and for your design to follow accordingly.
Effective graphic design can really boost your website by increasing its visual appeal, professionalism, and usability:
- Visuals can promote communication of ideas to your viewers more quickly and effectively
- Correctly designed visuals make your content look authoritative and professional to your visitors
- Good design increases your site’s usability, rather than sending visitors away in confusion. Encourage visitors to engage with your site (rather than clicking the “close” button) by using a simply designed navigation, making sure your graphics are content appropriate, and choosing eye-pleasing colours and text styles.
In order to gain all these graphic design advantages for your website, avoid making these common mistakes:
- Distracting graphics next to important content. Distracting elements, like flashing items or animations, can draw your viewer’s eye away from your content and make it impossible for them to digest your intended message.
- Clashing or busy backgrounds. Backgrounds that make text difficult or impossible to read will definitely send your visitors to find the same information elsewhere.
- Extreme minimalism. A minimalist approach can create a professional, polished look but if it is taken too far your website will appear dull and amateurish.
- Using mismatched graphics. Using graphics with all different colour schemes or styles can tarnish your site’s content and credibility. Instead, choose graphics that follow a theme and clearly belong in the same set.
- Including too few graphics. Long blocks of undifferentiated text is unappealing to read and can ward off visitors. A quality website has a nice balance of text, graphics, and other utilities to keep viewers interested and involved.
- Irrelevant graphics. Graphics shouldn’t be used gratuitously – only use graphics if they enhance your content in some way. Ensuring your graphics are relevant means they will provide a visual stimulus that viewers will remember longer than the text.
For more handy design and printing tips, head to your nearest Kwik Kopy Centre.